We’ve all been affected by teachers in our lives... now consider how they’ve been affected by us, their students. These memoirs provide a range of experiences in the classroom that are touching, humorous and enlightening.
edited by Pearl Rock Kane
A diverse collection of teachers share their first experiences entering the classroom. While no two stories are alike, they all share the challenges of entering a new environment and learning to connect to students, fellow teachers and administrators.
by Erin Gruwell
Based on her years with the Freedom Writers, Erin Gruwell both tells a story and honors the students she worked with. This book goes beyond a teacher making a connection with students, to empowering them to change their lives.
by LouAnne Johnson
Originally titled My Posse Don’t Do Homework, this autobiography of a marine turned teacher gets into the life of teachers and students in disadvantaged communities. It looks deeply into how to engage students in learning on their terms. LouAnne Johnson is a skilled writer who captures the details of life inside and outside the classroom.
by Bel Kaufman
One isn’t sure whether to laugh or cry after reading this book. Nearly 50 years later the education bureaucracies are still perpetrating some of the same crazy rules and regulations on teachers. Told with a wicked sense of humor, this book transcends time.
by Frank McCourt
Famous for Angela’s Ashes and ‘Tis, this memoir of Frank McCourt’s career in teaching is just as moving. As someone who started teaching outside the box and remained happily ignorant of the “right way” to teach, McCourt’s escapades speak to all of us who wish to make a difference in the lives of children.
by Esmé Raji Codell
Danielle Dadamo says:
This book is AMAZING! If you are a first year teacher, it is a must red. A lot of great ideas on how to survive your first classroom plus lots of antedotes to keep yourself sane after the end of a grueling workday. Enjoy!
by Gregory Michie
Capturing the grit of inner-city schools, this book honestly portrays all that a new teacher needs to learn in order to effectively educate his students. It also addresses the choices a teacher must make in trying to follow the dictates from on high while meeting the needs of the students before him.
by Dan Brown, foreword by Randi Weingarten
A novice teachers enters a 4th grade class in the Bronx, and faces probably the greatest challenge in his life. Yet he perseveres, and not only sheds light on the education system but his own growth as well.
by Daniel Robb
A unique true story about working with troubled teenage boys at a school off the coast of Massachusetts. It’s a touching work about a community of strangers that comes together to meet a range of needs. If you thought working in a classroom was isolated, try teaching on a literal island.
by Pat Conroy
Pat Conroy spent a year in 1969 teaching students who were literally cut off from their own country. A white man working with black children on an island off the coast of South Carolina, this true story addresses issues originally raised by Brown v. Board of Education. It also speaks to the relationship between teacher and students, and the community that evolves within a classroom.
Recommending books so good, they'll keep you up past your bedtime. more...
About Simeon Stolzberg
Simeon Stolzberg has eclectic taste, from cyber punk to historical fiction to education policy. His career in schools has led him to appreciate any books that engage kids, or the kid in every adult.
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